degree-of-interest: Master of Business Administration Follow These 7 Steps to Choose an MBA Track Marketing and Communications | October 3, 2023 When you’re planning on building a fulfilling career in business, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) provides a valuable education. This degree teaches you business skills and concepts with an option to specialize in a particular area. Knowing which area or track to choose can be challenging, especially if you’re interested in more than one. What is the best MBA specialization? If you’re unsure which track to choose as an MBA student, the following information can help. What Is an MBA? An MBA program is designed to help business students gain knowledge and build the skills needed for effective leadership. This type of degree program is typically aimed at working professionals who are interested in advancing their careers. For example, an MBA student might earn this degree to pursue a company’s management or top executive position. Since working professionals need to balance work and school, these programs often include multiple formats, such as online courses or in-person and online instruction. However, choosing a format isn’t the only decision you’ll need to make about your MBA program. You can also select a track focused on a specific area, such as leadership or marketing. The track you choose provides you with a more in-depth education in that area, which can help prepare you for a successful business career. For example, a marketing track helps you learn the concepts and skills needed for a marketing career. Steps to Take to Choose the Right MBA Track Choosing the right track at the start of your MBA program might seem complicated, especially if you’re not sure about your long-term career goals. The following steps can guide you through this decision-making process. Speak to Your School Advisors You don’t have to make such a weighty decision on your own. Talking to your school advisors is a great way to learn more about different MBA tracks to narrow down your options. You can also speak with school advisors about your career goals or professional interests and experience, which can help them point you in the right direction. For example, you might consider choosing a human resource management track if you already have experience working in human resources. Talking to your advisors can help you understand your track options better, so you can move on to the next step. Follow Your Passion Consider what you are passionate about to help you determine which MBA track is best for you. Do you have a strong interest in sports? A sports management MBA track can help you build a career as a leader or manager in the sports industry. Do you have a passion for helping those in need? A nonprofit leadership MBA track can provide the education needed to take on a leadership role that allows you to focus your career on helping others. When you identify what you’re passionate about, you can use this to look into an MBA track that fits your interests. Speak to Professionals in the Track You’re Considering Talking to school advisors and thinking about your interests and passion are good ways to move toward choosing an MBA track but getting information from the inside can also help. Talk to professionals who work in the field you’re thinking of choosing to get a better idea of what it’s like as a career. For example, talk to operations management or marketing professionals if you’re considering one of these MBA tracks. Industry professionals can help you learn what to expect from a career in that area, so you can determine if it’s right for you. Be Confident When choosing an MBA track, don’t hesitate to step out of your comfort zone or challenge yourself. If you’re unsure which track to choose, look for opportunities to learn more about them. In addition to finding industry professionals to talk to, you might look for local events to attend in those areas, such as conferences, job fairs, or workshops. These events allow you to gain more knowledge about different tracks, so you can choose one that best fits your goals. You might also consider taking on an internship where you can get hands-on experience of what working in a particular area is like. Consider Your Previous Learning Experience Think about the work and educational experiences you’ve had in the past. Doing so can help you learn more about what you liked or didn’t like in a certain job or school program, which allows you to narrow down your options. For example, you might think back to a previous job or school experience and discover that you loved taking on a leadership role for a work or academic project. This might inspire you to choose an MBA track that focuses on leadership in a career in management. Do Your Homework/Research Being able to make an informed MBA track decision involves spending time doing research. Explore each MBA track you’re interested in and the industry or field it’s part of so you can determine if it’s a good fit for you. For example, do your research on the sports industry for a sports management track or the human resources industry for a human resources management track. This includes reading about these areas, attending industry events, and talking to industry professionals. Make Your Decision From speaking to school advisers to doing as much research as possible, these steps can guide you through choosing an MBA track. When you’ve moved through these steps, your final step is deciding on your track. At this point, you should have a better idea of your career goals, interests, and passions. You should also know what to expect from a career in the area or areas you’re considering. Weighing the information you’ve gathered can help you compare MBA track options and choose the best one for your education and career aspirations. Learn More Today Deciding which MBA track to pursue helps you determine where you want your career to go. Finding a high-quality MBA program that aligns with your personal and professional goals is essential to make the most of your education. At Carson-Newman University, our Christian college offers an MBA program that combines practical skills and knowledge with an education that teaches you how to apply your faith to your career. We have several specialization areas for MBA students, including human resource management, leadership, marketing, operations management, sport management, and nonprofit leadership. We can help you find the right MBA track based on your interests and goals. To learn more about any of our MBA tracks and get information on our admissions process, don’t hesitate to contact Carson-Newman University.